Show highlights included the increased power of the H125 that will enable operators to lift up to an additional 190 kg (419 lbs), Shell Aircraft confirming their interest in using the H160 for offshore transportation missions, and Metro Aviation ordering an additional 12 new EC145e helicopters.
Customs and Border Protection will add 16 new H125 helicopters to their fleet, with deliveries beginning later this year from Airbus’ production facility in Columbus, Miss. Another H125 order was signed with Ascent Helicopters in Western Canada.
“At Airbus Helicopters, we are constantly focused on finding ways to help our customers better execute their missions,” said Bruno Even, Airbus Helicopters CEO. “We are honoured by the trust that our first-time and returning customers place in our aircraft and support solutions, which has been confirmed once again at this year’s Heli-Expo.”
Airbus received an order for three new H135s from NASA, marking the first-time partnership between the US space program and Airbus Helicopters. The agency will use the aircraft for a variety of missions, including missile launch security at Kennedy Space Center in Florida, emergency medical services and qualified personnel transport.
Reinforcing their commitment to ensuring the highest level of safety available, tourism operator Maverick Helicopters announced it will retrofit its entire fleet of 34 EC130 B4 helicopters with the Airbus Crash Resistant Fuel System.
On the support and services side, Airbus secured numerous global support contracts, including Papillon, Heliportugal, and DRF Luftrettung who extended its HCare Smart contract for another eight years. These plans enable customers to increase availability and mission success, optimize their costs, lower the maintenance burden, enhance safety and sustain the value of their assets. Airbus also unveiled its new collaborative AirbusWorld customer portal and an online Marketplace making e-commerce practices from the consumer world available to Airbus customers. Additionally, the company has nearly doubled the number of helicopters now sharing flight and maintenance data with the company in just one year.
Also announced at the show, Airbus’ global helicopter fleet reached 100 million flight hours.